Diagnostics and audiology
Early detection of hearing loss is key for children and their families. Better understanding and awareness can improve the socio-emotional bonding, (alternative) language development in the child, and eventual access to health and support services and technical devices.
Early childhood development
The period between birth and 3 years old is one of the most critical phases in a child’s life. It creates a basis for later achievements in education, employment, and life. Providing early childhood development interventions is crucial to ensure that all children, including deaf and hard-of-hearing, can reach their full potential.
Literacy and numeracy development
Literacy development starts with language acquisition during early childhood. While hearing children use the sound of spoken language to read, for deaf and hard-of-hearing children a different teaching approach is needed. Like literacy, numeracy development can also be challenging for deaf and hard-of-hearing learners.
Inclusive education refers to a quality education system that accommodates all learners on an equal basis, including deaf and hard-of-hearing children. Working towards inclusion requires adaptation of teaching methods, curriculum, physical structures, and practices of educational environments to make them accessible for all students.
Teachers and support staff are pivotal in the learning development of deaf and hard-of-hearing children. However, many teachers in developing countries only receive training to educate hearing children. In some countries, special education courses are provided, but they often cover theoretical knowledge and no concrete teaching methods to use in the classroom.